Adams, E. Kathleen; Blake, Sarah C.; Raskind-Hood, Cheryl; Chien, Linien; Zhou, Mei; Liff, Jonathan; Eley, William (Georgia Public Health Association, 2007)
The Breast and Cervical Cancer Prevention and Treatment Act (BCCPTA) provided states with an optional Medicaid eligibility category for uninsured women with breast and/or cervical cancers. The BCCPTA is the first and only such effort to use a population-based public health screening program, the National Breast and Cervical Cancer Early Detection Program (NBCCEDP) to provide a pathway to publicly funded health insurance for otherwise uninsured low-income women. Georgia was one of the first states to adopt the BCCPTA and was one of only twelve states that provided Medicaid eligibility to women screened by non-NBCCEDP providers. We use 2003 Georgia Medicaid claims and enrollment data to investigate the scope of the state’s BCCPTA enrollment and enrollees’ costs as well as demographic characteristics of breast and cervical cancer patients in Georgia’s BCCPTA and other Medicaid eligibility categories. Georgia’s Medicaid coverage of women with breast and/or cervical cancer under BCCPTA accounted for over one-third of all women with these cancers covered by the state in 2003 alone. Those newly eligible under BCCPTA were more likely to have breast, as opposed to cervical, cancer and to be older than those women with breast/cervical cancers enrolled in Georgia Medicaid due to low-income, pregnancy or disability status. Georgia’s Medicaid program spent over $29 million on BCCPTA enrollees in 2003 at a cost of over $12,000 per enrollee. BCCPTA enrollee costs were more similar to those for disabled women with these cancers, about $19,500, than to costs for low-income/pregnant women which equaled about $7,500. By expanding Medicaid coverage, BCCPTA can potentially bring women in at earlier stages of their cancer and provide needed coverage/treatment. Future research should examine the potential effect of BCCPTA on reduced morbidity and mortality among these low-income women.
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